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From the President
  • President's Theme: Plant Connecticut: Be a Conservation Champion
    Conserve Water - Assist Pollination - Garden Naturally
    To participate in the 2017-2019 state project, click here.

  • 2016-2017 Annual Report

(*Annual Reports from previous years are archived here.)

President's Message (from the NEWS)

Greetings Fellow Gardeners,

Many of you have participated in your club's most important annual fundraiser this past month and I trust that your May plant sale went off without a hitch and you were rewarded handsomely. It is now a fait accompli and, hopefully, you will find time to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Gardens are in full bloom now, and the early flowering trees, such as Redbuds, Kwanzan Cherries, Ornamental Almonds and Dogwoods were truly a sight to behold this past month. Now we get a chance to admire the Rhododendrons and Azaleas in full bloom.

Several clubs are in full swing preparing for their upcoming flower shows and garden tours. We wish them and their participating members all the success they so richly deserve.

The National Garden Clubs Convention took place in Richmond, Virginia last month, and our Former President Jane Waugh and our First Vice President Arlene Field will report on that noteworthy event in their articles below.

In the meantime, I trust you have had an opportunity to give some consideration to participating in my President's Project "Plant Connecticut - Be a Conservation Champion." Creating a "Pollinator-friendly Garden" or a "Xeriscape Garden" in your community is certainly worth pursuing as a club project. Or, for individual club members, create a Xeriscape garden on your home property. Go to our Federation's website and in the marquee click on for the brochure or contact our State Project's Chair Holly Kocet at

Following are some upcoming events I'd like you to be aware of:

- Enjoy some of the many scheduled garden tours. Enjoy the outdoors. Have fun!

-Send your entry to Rodney Hayes at See article below.

August 2 - PLANT SCIENCE DAY - Lockwood Farm, Hamden, CT, 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. The schedule includes lectures, presentations, displays and demonstrations throughout the day. A multitude of diverse organizations plan to be on hand to provide insight and counsel on horticultural and environmental issues that affect all of us in our gardening pursuits. Lots to learn all day from experts at The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (CAES) and others. Walk around many fields of organically grown produce and enjoy the Bird and Butterfly Garden next to the pavilion.

- Send your nominations to Polly Brooks, Second Vice President, at See article below.

September 20 - CLUB PRESIDENTS DAY - Held at The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station's Jones Auditorium, 123 Huntington Street, New Haven, 10:00 am. All Club Presidents are invited to attend this meeting of The Federation Board for a half-day of information sharing and an opportunity to meet our Board members and engage with fellow Club presidents. Details will be provided as the date draws closer.

Fall 2017 - BEYOND BEGINNING DESIGN WORKSHOPS at CAES. Series 5. See article below.

September and October - SCHOOLS - Gardening Study School, Course IV September 26-28 at CAES. Flower Show School Course II September 26-28 at Kellogg's; Environmental Studies School Course II October 11-13 at Kellogg's.

October 25 - AWARDS LUNCHEON at Aqua Turf.

October 30-November 2 - NEW ENGLAND GARDEN CLUBS ANNUAL MEETING and SYMPOSIUM - Warwick, Rhode Island. Anyone is invited to attend - it is not just for Judges. The meeting and lectures are open to all garden club members. Go to our Federation's website and click in the marquee for the brochure and registration form.

Many more details of Federation schools, tours and club events can be found on our website Also, the updated Board of Directors list is posted in the Login section.

In closing, I know many clubs are celebrating their Annual Meeting this month and several will be welcoming a new president and officers. Congratulations to all of the incoming officers. You have important responsibilities and much fun ahead. I look forward to working with you all. Let me know if I, or any of our Board members, may assist you with any of your club projects or concerns.

In the spirit of Conservation,

Inge Venus




FGCCT Honors Jacqueline Connell

The Harbor Lights Were Shining Brightly at

Greetings Fellow Gardeners!

It might have been frigid outside, but it was warm and wonderful at The Federation's State Flower Show, "Ports of Call," Feb 19-22 at the CT Convention Center in Hartford. Inspired by exotic ports around the world, the Floral Designs were stunning, the Horticulture shimmered and the Photography and Special Exhibits were fascinating. Many, many thanks to Show Chair, Barbara Bruce, and her legions of Exhibitors, Judges, Hostesses and Volunteers. It took much more than a village to put on this visual and fragrant extravaganza. Visitors were transported in their imaginations to dreamy climes around the globe. Congratulations on its grand success to everyone who helped with the show and to all who entered designs, plants, photography and special exhibits-we thank you for the superb adventure.

Left to Right: Becky Paul passing the legacy on to "Ports of Call" Chair, Barbara Bruce; Opening ceremony with Roger Swain; North East Expos President Kristie Gonsalves; FGCCT President Jacqueline Connell and FS Chair Barbara Bruce;
Award of Horticultural Excellence and Grower's Choice Award for Clivia by Ginni Donovan, Cheshire GC and Suburban GC of Cheshire.

From Left to Right: Club Competition Award: Vignette "Adventures in Africa" by Evergreen GC; President Susan Fisher. Designers Susan Jackson, Sally Whipple. Missing from photo: Joan Merman and Rita Patrello. Section A, Class 3 "Coral Fringed Barbados" by Alice Luster. Designer's Choice Award; Terry Stoleson Creative Design Award; and Award of Design Excellence. Educational Top Exhibitor Award for "The Plight of the Magnificent Monarchs" by Pomperaug Valley GC; Designer Marty Sherman.

From left to Right: CT Photography Award to Susan Berensen for "Vacation Memories." Landscape Design Council Award presented to Creative Contours for Landscape #15.Artistic Crafts Award to Mary Pura, Danbury GC, for "Lei."

Photos by Becky Paul, Leslie Martino and Inge Venus.

Show Committee - The Crew

President - Jacqueline Connell
General Chairman, Schedule & Treasurer -
Barbara Bruce
Northeast Expos Liaison - Jane Waugh
Design Coordinator - Barbara Bosco
Horticulture Coordinator - Ronnie Schoelzel
Special Exhibits - Maureen Carson
Photography - Leslie Martino & Jacqueline Connell
Floor Plan - Alice & Duane Luster
Design Classification - Terry Stoleson & Maria Nahom
Horticulture Classification - Rodney Hayes & Felise Cressman
Staging - Pat Dray & MaryEllen Unger
Design Entries Facilitator - Jan Hickcox
Horticulture Entries - Cindy Marien
Painting - Kathrine Neville
Design Quality Control - Ellen Clarke
Horticulture Entries Facilitator - Cordalie Benoit
Horticulture Placement - Kathrine Neville
Signs & Entry Cards - MaryEllen Unger
Administration/Formatting - Donna Nowak
Judges - Trish Manfredi
Awards - Alison Feaster & Kathie Skinner
Walk-in Horticulture Entries - Ellie Tessmer
Judges Clerks - Margareta Kotch
Publicity - Rebecca Paul
Comment Cards - Kris Urbanik
Hospitality - Sophie Kelley
Hostesses - Cathy Ritch
Membership - Leslie Martino
Books - Nancy Cebik & Sally Kuslis


Connecticut Landscape Design School March 24-26

March in The Federation means another Landscape Design Study School is coming. Landscape Chair, Susan Laursen, and her committee will present Course I March 24-26. While the courses may be taken in any order, Course I is the perfect place to start. It covers such varied topics as the development of design, principles and elements of landscape design, including space and color, the site plan, the role of designers and available resources. We are delighted to be back in our "home away from home" at the CT Agricultural Experiment Station in New Haven. Join us and learn how to integrate effective design into your home landscape or a club or town project.

SAVE THE DATE: April 15 for FGCCT's Annual Meeting at Aqua Turf

Please attend the State Annual Meeting at Aqua Turf in Plantsville on April 15 to inaugurate our new State President, Jane Waugh, and her in-coming Administration.

We are most fortunate to have Candace Morgenstern as our featured program speaker. Candace brings both a wealth of experience and a fresh approach to Floral Design. For years a Judge and National Board Member, former State President of RI, a leader of the American delegation of the World Association of Flower Arrangers (WAFA), Candace is sure to dazzle us with her innovative arrangements. Don't miss this very special opportunity to experience one of the East Coast's most accomplished designers.

Share the Best of Yourself: Be a Mentor

Many of our clubs will be changing officers and committee chairs this spring. If you hold one of these key positions, please help create a smooth transition and a nurturing environment by serving as a Mentor to your successor. You have spent the last couple of years or more learning the "tricks of the trade," the intricacies of your particular office--these are rich and vital commodities. When you take your successor under your wing, you, your successor, and your club will all be winners.

Happy Vernal Equinox, Happy Spring!

* Jacqueline Connell




So many clubs have been supportive of our Science Center Children’s Garden by sending in donations. We welcome other clubs to join in.
This endeavor will be so rewarding to families visiting the center. For a complete list of clubs that have donated check our website

A special thank you goes to Chair Dee Mozzocchi, and to Kathrine Neville and her committee for working on the exciting garden plans.



Copyright © The Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut, Inc.
Last updated
May 31, 2017